Sajid Javid says he is against imposing mandatory vaccinations
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New research comparing the symptoms of vaccination and early-stage COVID-19 showed that it is not possible to tell them apart with any level of accuracy.
The researchers, writing in the E Clinical Medicine Journal of the Lancet were only able to accurately identify positive cases with a 60 percent accuracy.
Many of these individuals did not have symptoms needed to access testing infrastructure, such as fever, persistent coughing and loss of taste or smell.
They said recently vaccinated people should get tested and self-isolate if they experience any symptoms.
The symptoms examined in the study were the currently used diagnostic criteria made available to healthcare workers.
Common post-vaccination symptoms identified in the study were headaches, fatigue, aches and pains.
These symptoms are also common in otherwise asymptomatic Covid infections.
With clinicians unable to distinguish between the vaccine and infection symptoms, it is more unlikely for people without medical training.
The researchers also tried to use machine learning algorithms to improve diagnostic results.
The machines were also unable to achieve a good level of accuracy in distinguishing between vaccine symptoms and infection symptoms.
Machine learning algorithms have been used in other areas of medicine to improve diagnosis.
This can be done either by reducing the workload of clinicians with automated systems or by training algorithms to process data in ways that a doctor isn’t able to.
The study looked specifically at the Pfizer BioNTech and AstraZeneca vaccines.
These are the two most commonly used vaccines in the UK.
Vaccine related symptoms are found more often in younger individuals, while severity of Covid infections increases with age.
Vaccine symptoms are most common in the day immediately after receiving a vaccine.
Data was collected using a mobile app for symptom reporting, launched by King’s College London and ZOE Limited.
They filtered the data set to people who took a Covid test within 10 days of being vaccinated.
Of the nearly 15,000 people who took tests after being vaccinated only 149 tested positively.
These 149 were combined with a control group of 149 who tested negatively for Covid but had suffered from vaccine symptoms.
The research adds to a growing amount of evidence for Covid infections occurring post vaccination.
Booster shots appear to reduce the risk of these breakthrough infections.
Breakthrough infections typically are less severe but are still able to transmit the virus to other people.
Vaccinated people who have symptoms should still take appropriate measures to ensure they do not infect others.
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